By Lillian Bowe
It will be a first for Mrs. Portales Lorissa Marshall, 25, donning sash and crown and strolling down the catwalk in heels in front of hundreds.
Marshall will do just that June 28 in Albuquerque at the African American Performing Arts Center, competing for the title of Mrs. New Mexico.
Marshall was named Mrs. Portales in March.
Mrs. New Mexico is a pageant for married women. If given the title, she would compete at the Mrs. America pageant.
“I am really excited and a little nervous since I have never done this before, but I am ready,” Marshall said.
Marshall is from Albuquerque and moved to Portales in 2008 to obtain her degree in education and school counseling at Eastern New Mexico University.
Marshall met her husband Jimmie at the Dog Days event and they now have a 2-year-old daughter, Marrie. They left Portales in 2010 when her husband got a job in Santa Fe and returned to Portales in 2012.
Why did you want to be Mrs. Portales?
I thought it would be a great opportunity to bring awareness to my platform which is education. I want to be a voice for education and show everyone why education is so important for our community. A lot of my volunteer work is based in education.
What brought you back to Portales?
My husband was on the ENMU basketball team from 2008-2010 and he absolutely loved it. He was then offered a job in 2012 to help coach the team and we came back for that. I decided to go back to school to get my masters in education. So Eastern has become our home away from home.
What type of volunteer work do you do?
I am part of the Friends for Trio or (F.O.T.O) which we help college students with studying or anything else they need help with. I am also a part of the Counseling Student Initiative, Relay for Life, Eastern in Action, the Be a Friend First group at Lindsey-Steiner Elementary as I am interning there and I participated in the St. Jude Children’s Hospital Up All Night Event.
What type of training have you been doing to prepare for the pageant?
Right now I am working dialect to help with pronouncing (words). Our generation tends to up talk which means we sound like we end sentences as a question. I really have to work on not doing that. I also have to walk for an hour in heels every day. I do laundry and other chores in my heels just to get use to it. I also have to work on my posture. I did not think it would be so much work, but it is a lot of fun too.
What is the one quality do you think Mrs. New Mexico should have?
The biggest quality you have to have is confidence in yourself. You need to walk and talk with confidence and know that you belong in the competition.